The Street Fighter characters are somewhere between Mario and the Dragonlance bunch on my don’t-f*ck-with-beloved-characters-of-my-awkward-youth meter. So when I was asked to check out a live action version of these stalwarts as washouts trying to get their lives back together it created certain internal anxiety.
It delivers, though, across all 9 episodes. The first premiered sometime in 2006, right as the first twinges of 8 bit nostalgia surfaced, and now, in mid-2008, the series feels right. Some would say “Perfect”. (Yes, that’s a Street Fighter reference.)
What’s immediately striking (pun intended) is that it’s a live action series, not animated. Lame, says me, hoping to avoid a “thinking man’s” re-imagining of characters created to beat the Holy Hell out of each other, but then the first effects show up. And they’re good. Kung Fu Hustle good. Which is an apt comparison because, like Kung Fu Hustle, the series is funny. Naturally, it’s funniest to people who misspent their youth button-mashing to Street Fighter tournaments (there are plenty o’ deeper game references & jokes (i.e. how DO you pronounce Ryu’s name?), but it hums along story-wise enough that the average game-illiterate can enjoy.Note on the humor: it’s long on the, ahem, specific ethnic nature of the characters. Blanka comes across a little Tony Montana-ish and Dhalsim is a cab driver, but in some strange attempt at parity Chun Li is now a white chick, so make of it what you will.
Overall, series creator Sam Reich and the rest of the bunch over at CHTV are churning out series over at College Humor whether you watch them or not. Get to know them now by watching one of their best series from the past taking on one of the best things from your past. Round 1. Fight!
Editor’s Note: We are thrilled to have Sean Casey joining the Tubefilter News staff. Sean is a comedy writer and producer living in Los Angeles. His credits include developing show ideas for MTV, creating and producing web series for The Independent Comedy Network and Just For Laughs. He even wrote an episode of The Nanny for Russian television. He lives and writes with his fiancee, even though she’s a Packers fan. Go Bears.